Victories for Workington AFC have been few and far between on the 25th March in previous years but such trivialities would never deter followers from turning up to support the team…….
2017 Coalville Town (away) 1-2 We looked anything but play-off hopefuls, on our first ever visit to the Mander Cruickshank Solicitors Stadium (Owen Street), and slumped to a disappointing reverse as the Leicestershire side completed a league double at our expense.
Reds rarely looked like scoring on a frustrating afternoon, apart from a Dav Symington shot which thudded against an upright, and even our stoppage time consolation came via a Danny Jenno headed own-goal.
Thankfully, we returned to winning ways after that setback to secure a berth in the play-offs!
2014 North Ferriby United (home) 3-3 This was a cracking game and a good advertisement for Conference North football but, unfortunately, neither team plays at that level at the moment.
Bottom of the table Reds came within a whisker of an unexpected victory over title chasing Ferriby in a six goal thriller with the visitors scoring the final goal of the evening five minutes from time. Reds trailed 0-1 and 1-2 but Scott Allison twice equalised and then debutant, Godwin Abadaki, put us ahead for the first time in the eighty-second minute. United’s Nathan Jarman hadn’t read the script, though, and netted the late leveller.
Godwin and D’arcy O’Connor had joined the club on loan from Rochdale.
2005 Prescot Cables (home) 2-0 Skipper Steve Birks emerged as man-of-the-match as Reds recorded a first Good Friday win since 1962. He was the driving force and scored the opening goal as the hosts completed a seventh league double of a memorable season.
Cables played some decent football but lacked that cutting edge and couldn’t find a way past Adam Collin who was keeping his eighteenth clean sheet.
Substitutes Graham Goulding and Steve Archibald combined for the second goal, scored by the latter, with the victory maintaining top spot for Tommy Cassidy’s side in the Unibond League’s Premier Division.
2000 Congleton Town (home) 1-2 We handed Town a two goal interval lead then dominated much of the second half only to fall short in the end. Reds actually won twenty corners in the game but either Town were defensively sound or we were too naive in their area!
Brian Dawson did eventually find the target but efforts from Marc Green and John Borg rebounded into play off the woodwork.
The useless piece of trivia from this game saw both teams fielding a ‘Wayne Johnson’ in the number 5 shirt!
1997 Leigh RMI (away) 1-2 When the team sheet was handed in, Reds only had eight players in the dressing room but the rest arrived in dribs and drabs. But the preparation was far from ideal and Leigh, riding high in the NPL First Division, netted twice in the opening twelve minutes.
After establishing a foothold in the game, Reds gave a good account of themselves but found veteran goalkeeper, David Felgate (over 600 Football League games under his belt) in frustratingly good form.
He was finally beaten by our man-of-the-match, Lee Collins, but the 85th minute goal was too little, too late!
1995 Alfreton Town (away) 2-3 Reds looked ‘dead and buried’ when Alfreton netted their third goal in the seventieth minute but it was at that point we staged a comeback. Simon Andrews marked his full debut by scoring his first goal for the club and Steve Watt added a second soon after.
We continued to press for an unlikely equaliser and it was the Alfreton Reds who were the more relieved to hear the final whistle.
1991 Curzon Ashton (away) 2-3 Another defeat by the odd goal in five with Reds undone by a stoppage time winner from the hosts. We were two goals down but a Keith Sawyers brace – a sweet volley just before half time and a direct free-kick soon after the interval – capped a fine recovery.
But, just when we thought we had bagged a deserved point, Curzon scored a late decider.
1989 Lancaster City (home) 0-0 Goalkeepers Lee Copeland and Glen Johnson enjoyed a trouble-free afternoon as Reds and City played out a goalless draw. Ironically, John Smith – Workington’s record non-league scorer at the time – was watching from the sidelines in his capacity as Lancaster’s assistant manager.
We produced just three draws that season and this was the only one at home!
1978 Runcorn (home) 1-2 Ian Hodgson scored his first NPL goal for the club in this encounter but, unfortunately, in vain. The visitors scored their first goals at Borough Park to secure a narrow victory and a league double in the process.
1974 Newport County (away) 0-4 Reds were on another of their regular jaunts down south and, after a game at Brentford on the Saturday, travelled west for our Monday evening fixture in South Wales.
But they discovered veteran striker, Brian Godfrey, still had plenty to offer as they slumped to a heavy defeat. He scored a well taken hat-trick, adding to his century (plus) tally of goals in the Football League.
It was our heaviest defeat in twelve visits to Somerton Park.
1972 Hartlepool (home) 0-0 Len Ashurst played for Hartlepool and Sunderland during his distinguished career and then managed both. He would have been pleased with the point his side obtained at Borough Park in what was a regular score line for us that season – Reds’ sixth (of seven) goalless draw on home soil!
1967 Darlington (away) 1-1 Brian Tinnion scored ten goals during the ’66-67 campaign – his breakthrough season for Reds. Two of those goals were in the home and away matches against Darlington, the second in the drawn game at Feethams.
It was a disappointing season for both clubs as they (along with Swansea Town and Doncaster Rovers) were relegated from the Third Division.
1961 Southport (home) 3-1 Reds were on course for an 8th place finish in the Fourth Division and a comfortable home win over Southport left the home support satisfied with a decent performance. Ron McGarry, Tommy Dixon and Peter Harburn had all scored regularly that season and shared the goals on this occasion. But the alarm bells were ringing in the boardroom afterwards when the attendance – just 1,750 – was announced. It was the lowest gate recorded throughout our ten seasons in the Football League!